Schoolhouse Beat

San Antonio board drops search firm after superintendent finalist withdraws

The San Antonio Independent School Board has voted to end its contract with a search firm after the lone finalist in a superintendent search withdrew his candidacy amid concerns about his finances. The San Antonio Express-News says PROACT was hired last year to recruit candidates for the district's top job. The board chose Manuel L. Isquierdo last week as the lone finalist. Board president Ed Garcia says board members were told of Isquierdo's tax problems — he owes more than $150,000 to the IRS — and knew he had $12,545 in disallowable credit card charges in 2008 that he had to return to Sunnyside Unified School District in Tucson, Ariz., where he is superintendent. But the board didn't know that a grand jury had sought documents related to Isquierdo's marketing of a laptop incentive program, and that he recently lost a $1.1 million home to foreclosure.

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